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The TERRIOT Acadian Family was founded in 1999 as a volunteer organization for the benefit of all descendants of Jehan and Perrine Terriot. The goal of the organization is to 

(1) consolidate the existing genealogy for all descendants of Jehan and Perrine Terriot, and
(2) form a family organization of delegates who each represent their respective
The Delegate. The concept of the 'delegate' goes back to the early days of Acadia when our ancestors governed themselves using a very informal representative form of government that was based on the delegate. Each delegate represented a number of Acadians, typically a neighborhood. In our organization, each delegate represents a branch of the family. When a delegate is invited into the organization, he or she brings the genealogy of his or her branch. The genealogy is reviewed by some of the other delegates, typically from the adjacent branches, to identify and resolve inconsistencies. The result is an integrated genealogy that is  better than the individual branch genealogies. The work of the delegate is to represent his/her 'Great Branch' not only to the rest of the organization but to the visitors of our website, which is essentially the rest of the world. In addition, each delegate is encouraged to continue to add to and improve the genealogy of his/her Great-Branch. One important tenet of our policy for our website data is that no vital records are published on-line for any of our living family members

The Great-Branch. One of the key aspects of our organization is that it is based on the 'Great-Branch' structure of the family. The 'Great-Branch' is a concept devised by the Terriot Acadian Family that is used to make it easier to organize our family genealogy and to manage the large number of branches. We estimate that the Terriot family is made up of some 1000 Great-Branches. 

The basis for a ‘Great-Branch’ is the ninth generation married male descendants of Jehan and Perrine Terriot and the married female descendants from the 2nd through the 9th generations. We distinguish between the two types of Great-Branches because the first category (those for the married male descendants) are the branches that are still 'growing' and they  must continue to be kept updated. On the other hand, the second category of branches (those for the married females) identify all of the families that are related to the Terriot family by marriage. Those are important as well but the documentation for those branches is much simpler because once we have identified the immediate family of the married female, no further additions or revisions need be made to that branch because it is not a branch of the Terriot family of course.

We chose the 9th generation as the basis for our organization because to most of us today, the 9th generation represents our great-grandfathers which is very meaningful to most of us. The 9th generation was the generation that brought the industrial revolution to North America in the mid-1800's. It is a little more difficult to relate with ancestors beyond the 9th generation. 


The TERRIOT Acadian Family is a non-profit organization that is privately funded. The organization is directed by the Founder, Joseph Ralph T. Theriault, on the advice of the Delegates. There are about 90 delegates at this time. As the website continues to attract new members of the family, each with new Great-Branches, the organization continues to grow. No dues or fees are required to participate in this organization. As you already know, the organization has a comprehensive website, one for the greater Terriot family (www.terriau.org/) and a second, the Joseph/Théogénie Great-Branch (www.terriau.org/joseph-theogenie/) for the Founder's own branch. A special section of the Terriot website is used to support the delegates. Through the websites, the Delegates exchange news, information about our genealogy, family history, music, food, language and other cultural matters. We encourage you to visit the Joseph/Théogénie Great-Branch website that exists today as an example. Our organization was also honored in 2003 and again in 2007 when we were selected to publish and maintain the Thériault family websites for the World Acadian Congress (CMA2004) in 2004 held in Clare, Nova Scotia, Canada and in 2009, held in Caraquet, New Brunswick, Canada. 

The organization is an experiment to see whether an organization that is wholly Internet-based, can succeed in consolidating and integrating the genealogy of the descendants of Jehan and Perrine Terriot. In addition to its genealogical goal, it also has a social aim to see how far we can go to 'pulling together' the various branches of the family so that they will at least be aware of each other, and hopefully, begin to know each other and perhaps even begin to undertake family genealogy-related projects together. We use our website as our main tool for informing each other and the world about each of our respective Great-Branches and to raise the awareness of these Great-Branches by documenting the genealogy, history and photos of our branches and by sharing news of our Great-Branches.

Some of the projects that we have been worked in the past include investigating the ways and means for restoring the tomb of Pierre Theriot in Convent, Louisiana; working together to resolve the biography and genealogy of some of our ancestors such as Jean Baptiste Terriot [6267], son of Charles Terriot and Angélique Doiron; resolving the confusion between Joseph dit Le Bonhomme Thériot (1728-1759) and of a second Joseph (1732 - before 1796), husband of Madeleine BOURGEOIS, and other more minor inconsistencies in our genealogy. Another very significant project is the Terriot Surname DNA Project (see the Terriot DNA Surname Project section of our family website (http://www.terriau.org/dna.htm). Through this project, we are able to help members of the family whose genealogy documentation cannot be completed, by comparing their genetics with the genetics of the Terriot family.


The membership of this organization is limited to two delegates per Great-Branch. A member of the Terriot family whether adirect or indirect descendantt,orr a familymember by marriage, may apply for membership if::

1. the genealogy of the Great-Branch is not included in the Jehan Terriot Archive and the individual has some information on the genealogy for the branch; or

2. the genealogy of the Great-Branch is included in the Jehan Terriot Archive, but an opening exists for a delegate for the branch.

In either case, the individual should be willing to work with the organization to research, develop and integrate the branch genealogy for the Archive and should also be willing to represent the Great-Branch in matters pertaining to the organization or to visitors of the Jehan and Perrine Terriot website.

With either condition,we will extend an invitation to the individual to join the organization. As a member, the individual will have free access to all of the documentation that we have produced including the   "Descendants of Jehan and Perrine Terriot" document which presents our complete works todate and will work with other members to further the goals of the organization. There are no membership dues or fees. Our address is shown below.

Joseph R. T. Theriault
Founder / Director

TERRIOT Acadian Family
Harvard, Massachusetts 01451
E-Mail: terriot@terriau.org

In bringing these websites and our JEHAN TERRIOT ARCHIVE to the World-Wide-Web, our hope is
  • to foster a better understanding of The Acadian story and especially of the Terriot/Theriault/Theriot family,  and
  • to improve communications between family members about its genealogy.
The focal point of our activity is the development of the JEHAN TERRIOT GENEALOGICAL ARCHIVE for all members of the Terriot family in the world. A good way to know who we are, why we were born where we were born, and why we are the way we are, is to know those who have come before us; their capabilities, their character, their struggles and their achievements.
We believe that genealogy is not only the research and study of vital records but also of the careful study of relevant history and thoughtful analysis to produce informed conclusions that may not be a matter of written record. 

Our purpose here is to interpret the family vital records and other historical information to produce a story that brings the past to life... a story that includes an informed interpretation of what life was like for our past generations.

ON INTEGRITY. We pledge to exercise great care in our notation to specifically distinguish fact from opinion whether it be our own or someone elses. In using someone else's information, we will be careful to give credit to the researcher and if the source of the data is not recorded, we will try to reflect this in our data. If we use someone else's intellectual property (i.e., it is not public domain), it will be with their consent and we will credit them (in the Credits page) with their generous contribution.
Similarly, we expect our visitors to respect the intellectual property of this site and to observe the following simple rules of common sense and courtesy:
    • you may use any property on this site only:
      • if it is used for your own non-commercial and non-profit purposes. You may copy the material for members of your family and friends but you may not copy the material for re-sale, and
      • if you properly mark the property as copyrighted with the following phrase: "Copyrighted by the TERRIOT ACADIAN FAMILY / TERRIAU.ORG".
    • if you use any property that we have borrowed from someone else, please contact the owner(s) of the property as listed on the Bibliography and Credits page;
    • most amateur webmasters do their work because they love doing it. They also love receiving a note of thanks and acknowledgement from their visitors.

    ON  CONFIDENTIALITY. We well recognize that by making this information available to the world,  some may try to misuse the information. Therefore, our pledge to any living person whose name may appear on these pages or in our Archive, is that we will take care to not reveal to the general public any information beyond personal names and family relationships.

    ON FAMILY VALUES. Consistent with our main goal of fostering family communication, our websites subscribe to high moral values and clean, wholesome information suitable for viewing and listening by all members of our families and our visitors. Our websites will be free of all commercial advertisements to avoid any possiblity of inappropriate advertisements.